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Writing Desk

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A writing desk completes and compliments a room like no other furniture can. Writing desks are truly versatile and they can be great addition for a home or office. By virtue of their versatility in styling, the use of desks extends to foyer, living room, family room, library and bedrooms and sometimes in children’s rooms as well. Writing desks can be sophisticated or intelligent, casual or contemporary. Learn to identify popular antique writing desk styles


Traditional and modern writing desks

Traditionally writing desks were used for writing letters by hand. The table came with a roll top that closes to hide current work. Some tables also came with simple fold close feature. The writing table came with plenty of room that made it look tidy, help maintain privacy and at the same time protect the work. Traditionally writing desks came with sloping tops to facilitate writing. Drawers and compartments were found on these tables.

The writing table today is designed for laptop computers. The writing surface typically folds down or slides out to preserve the compact size when closed. The modern writing tables come with pigeon-hole drawers that are smaller when compared to the traditional writing desk draws. In other words modern writing desks are very minimalist.


Contemporary writing desks

Contemporary writing desks sport a rich dark look with bright and vibrant interiors. The writing desks have spacious work surface which is scratch and stain resistant. A convenient drawer accommodates pen and paper, staples and clips and more while there is space in the writing area for a laptop, lamp and decorative items.

These immensely elegant and attractive writing desks that double up as computer desks come in an amazing variety of sizes, styles and finishes. There are exclusive keyboard and mouse shelves with drop-down functions like a traditional pencil drawer. The tack glide feature in these desks allows easier relocation.

Size of the writing desk depends on the purpose as it is essential to consider how much surface one needs to work on. The placement of the writing desk depends upon the available space. For instance a ladies writing desk can be placed in the bedroom instead of a traditional nightstand. This writing desk not only would hold all essentials but also provide plenty of room for the phone, family photos and favorite mementoes.


Antique writing desks

An antique writing desk recaptures the beauties and charms of a bygone era simultaneously accenting on the functional aspect of a writing desk. Antique writing desks are tastefully elegant and stylishly decorated and much sought after pieces. The beautiful design, intricately detailed ornamentation and rich tones are truly sought after and cherished by the discerning collector. Records reveal that such classic desk designs came into prominence only in the 17th and 18th centuries. Original desks from this era can be considered as truly antique. Infact many modern writing desks draw inspiration from such antique models.


Antique writing desks styles and models

The date or period of an antique writing desk can be recognized from its design and craftsmanship. Although most of the styles are named after British royalty nevertheless these styles are international and guide the discerning collector on the writing desk style of design and price worthiness of the desk.


Jacobean writing desks: These tables date back to the 1600 to 1690s and Jacobean design is English in style. Jacobean design is medieval in appearance, with straight lines, rigid designs and sturdy construction. An ornate carving of Acanthus leaves usually decorates the table. The designs are geometric and sport a dark finish. Original Jacobean tables are usually made of black walnut or oak and have thin strips of veneer used as decorative borders. Most American writing tables were patterned on this style.


William and Mary: Going back to the period 1690 to 1725, this is a European influenced style named after William and Mary of England. This style is distinctly Dutch and Chinese influences can also be seen. The desk is characterized by trumpet turned legs terminating in a ball. These tables have elaborately carved Spanish foot. Black walnut, ebony wood and holly contributed a refined and graceful look to these tables.


Queen Anne: This is a refinement of William and Mary style and appears extremely graceful period furniture.


Georgian: The classic Georgian style was in rage from 1714 to 1760 and is a more ornate version of Queen Anne with heavier proportions. Elaborately carved cabriole legs, pierced back splats are common design elements.


Chippendale: This style belongs to the period 1750 to 1790 and is named after the British designer and cabinet maker Thomas Chippendale. French, Chinese and gothic influence are abundantly reflected in this style. In the United States the Chippendale style became more refined and elegant.


Victorian: Gothic forms with heavy proportions, dark finishes, elaborate carvings and ornamentation are features of the Victorian writing desks. It is named after Queen Victoria of England who reigned from 1837 to 1901. This is the first furniture style of mass production. A Victorian writing desk is extremely ornate with ball and claw or small round feet with a coiled appearance.



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